Epilogue Delivered by Alick Stewart


T HE vein of Prologue should be half and half,
But Epilogue should only be a laugh;
This I have heard, though hardly in my teens,
From nice young Actresses behind the scenes:
Have at you then! ye venerable prigs,
Ye Rams of sable fleece and stiffen'd wigs!
I'll cut your solemn worships to the bone,
And spirit for the mischief shall atone.
I hate all Physick; but am least inclin'd
To what is call'd the physick of the mind .
Of pill or dose that ever bowels curs'd,
The moral griper is to me the worst;
And I had rather feel a hundred blows
Than hear the bagpipe of a Parson's nose.
The Saturnalia to the Roman slave
His tongue's free licence in December gave;
And we can make, before we lose December ,
The petty Nero our keen stripes remember:
No gloomier despot upon earth has rule
Than is the Tyrant of a Latin School,
Who, Church and King for ever in his throat,
Has no objection to a Sans-culotte ,
And, very like the Æsculapian College,
Bleeds in the lump to circulate his knowledge.
But rights of man the rights of boy include,
The charter of his nature wild and rude:
Shall we be told, that, if a boy should swear,
Or go to London for the change of air,
Or head a mob with genius and with spirit,
The rod is due to such an act of merit?
Shall we be told, that science can be taught ,
As wood is carv'd, or stone to figure brought?
Is it not evident, from Doctor Last ,
That all those dreams of Institute are past?
Poets are born, and so are Generals too,
And for a Lawyer any thing will do .
If trades are so delightfully confus'd,
It proves how talents are at School abus'd.
In Paris he who finds the ways and means ,
Found as a gardener cabbages and beans:
The taylor from his board would never budge,
Till Revolutions prov'd him born a Judge;
No more the cobler patches an old heel,
But mends and renovates the commonweal:
The moral is — that nothing 's to be learnt,
That Lessons are denounc'd , and Grammars burnt,
That here at least, Republicans in fun ,
We all are indivisible and one .
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